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Start a compost bin but worried about mice/rats

RubiRubi Posts: 131

I'm wanting to get a compost bin to put in garden waste such as grass clippings, leaves, old soil from pots and cardboard, but no food. 

Can this bin still attract vermin? 


  • Even if you add food for example peelings you shouldn't be attracting mice. If you google 'composting mix' or similar it will tell you that you need both green and brown wastes and if you keep a good supply of both the bin wont smell, and therefore no vermin. 

    That in mind I had a lovely set of snake eggs in my bin this year as it was so damn hot. so always worth checking before you stick a fork in.

  • Ladybird4Ladybird4 Posts: 36,197

    As compost breaks down it releases heat and will attract creatures to take advantage of this 'centrally heated' accommodation. Always hit the bin with a spade or fork when you go to add or remove compost. Constant disturbance like this is a really good deterrent to the furry things

    Cacoethes: An irresistible urge to do something inadvisable
  • I moved my dalek bin from a soil base to concrete and I still get worms but much less trouble with the little vermins.

    See my progress at:

    Can I make this into a signature?

    Last edited: 21 May 2016 13:53:39

  • rosemummyrosemummy Posts: 2,010

    malcolm brown that's interesting only space we have for compost bin at home is gravel over yukky old tarmac down side of house, was wondering about wormery or rotating hotbin( when get some spare cash) as I'd been told my dalek compost bin wouldn't work there (wish we'd kept it now as could have gone to allotment)

  • RubiRubi Posts: 131

    So if I just add garden waste, will this not get broken down? 

  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,053

    I've been making compost in all sorts of bins for about 40 years and in all that time I've had one family of field voles nest. I've had grass snakes , slow-worms and other things, but never once have I had rats or mice. 

    Please try not to worry about these things. 

    If mice move into the compost bin, they were already in the garden, you've just not noticed them.

  • They do say that you are never more than 50 yards from a rat .  They are all about us.

  • Lupin 1Lupin 1 Posts: 8,916

    I have 4 Daleks and have had them 13 + years, they stand on earth. Never had rats or mice in them, We've seen rats & mice in the garden and dealt with them.  

    The only raw produce I no longer put in them is potato peelings after a forum member said rats love them.

    I mix 50 / 50 green and brown and don't let my bins dry out. Turn them regularly and each time I pass I give them a kick just in case someone fancies sleeping / nesting in them image

  • CeresCeres Posts: 2,286

    I used to have mice in the compost bins but they moved out when I stopped putting coffee grounds in the bin. I reckon they were caffeine addicts and moved on to pastures new in search of a decent espresso. I miss them.....they looked so cute when they were having a wash.

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